ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Cutting down Scarecrows

A microRNA in Arabidopsis guides the cleavage of mRNAs encoding members of the Scarecrow-like family.

Jonathan Weitzman(jonathanweitzman@hotmail.com)

Micro-RNAs (miRNAs) have been found in plants, animals and microorganisms, but very few have been functionally characterized. In the September 20 Science, Llave et al. describe a specific function for the Arabidopsis miRNA 39, which accumulates in inflorescence tissue and is produced from an intergenic region in chromosome III (Science, 297:2053–2056, Septemeber 20, 2002).

The miRNA 39 sequence is perfectly complementary to an internal sequence in mRNAs encoding three members of the Scarecrow-like (SCL) transcription factor family. Llave et al. show that miRNA 39 guides the internal cleavage of target SCL mRNAs; they propose that miRNA 39 activity might involve the RISC complex (RNA-induced silencing complex) used in RNA silencing.

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to more than 35 years of archives, as well as TS Digest, digital editions of The Scientist, feature stories, and much more!
Already a member?
ADVERTISEMENT